Continuing their electric car’s incredible record-breaking streak, Volkswagen have announced that they’re going to send the ID R to China to set a record on the gruelling Tianmen Shan Big Gate Road. Featuring a total of 99 hairpins, the ascent promises to prove as one of the ID R’s biggest challenges to date.
Returning the ID R back to its hillclimb roots, it looks like Volkswagen have reverted to aero that they used at Pikes Peak back in 2018. That means that the smaller front splitter, rear diffuser and lower rear wing fitted for the Nürburgring and Goodwood FOS have been replaced with much larger attributes; the aim being more downforce at higher altitudes.
Unlike the aero that we’ve seen previously, Volkswagen have changed the ID R so that it is now red in colour and wears a special Tianmen Mountain logo. The colour comes due to the hillclimb taking place in China – a place where the colour red denotes good luck and happiness. Certainly two things that it’ll need to complete the terrifying ascent.
Now, the road. Located in the Tianmen Mountain National Park, the Tianmen Shan Big Gate Road is known to many as ‘one of the most challenging roads in the world’ and is adorned with warnings that only experienced drivers should ever attempt and all must drive at very slow speeds. Romain Dumas is a much braver man than us. The road is a total of 6.8 miles (from bottom to top) and climbs from 650ft above sea level to a highest point of 4,265ft.
Owing to the fact that the ID R will be the first hillclimb car to ever take on the mountain (Redbull once drifted up the mountain … definitely one to watch), there is currently no standing record time. Instead, Volkswagen will be staging an online gaming competition that allows participants to set a virtual record, with the fastest time becoming Romain’s target when he takes on the road for real.
As the first Volkswagen ID model to touch a road in China, the ID R’s record-setting hillclimb will be the first initiative by Volkswagen to promote the fully-electric ID range that is set to head to China in 2020. As with its previous appearances, Volkswagen aim to use the ID R to demonstrate their commitment and passion for e-mobility.
We have to say, we’re really quite excited for this; the dramatic looking road will certainly prove a challenge to the ID R and we can’t wait to see how quickly it makes it up the mountain. We’d also like to try set our own virtual records, so it might be time to source an office gaming PC! Will you be taking part? If you do, let us know your time on Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin.
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